Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager Chris Harrigan

UPDATED: Mar 12, 2022

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Key Takeaways

  • The minimum amount of liability insurance required is 25/50/25 in most states
  • Some states have UM/UIM and PIP insurance attached to liability coverage
  • Full coverage car insurance is required for drivers who finance or lease their vehicle

Were you curious about how much liability insurance coverage you need? The amount of coverage you need depends on where you live in America.

But what is the recommended coverage limit? Do not worry – we are here to help.

Read this article to learn more about the meaning of state minimum car insurance, the average coverage limits in the United States, and why car insurance companies recommend higher coverage levels.

What is the minimum amount of liability insurance coverage required?

The car insurance requirements you need depend on the state where you live. But most states have 25/50/25 limits.

What does 25/50/25 stand for? Here’s a list that shows what that means:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury of one person per accident.
  • $50,000 for bodily injury of a driver and their passengers per accident.
  • $25,000 for property damage per accident.

But what is the minimum amount of liability insurance coverage required in California, New York, and Florida? Let’s look at a complete list that shows the minimum car insurance requirements in each state.

Minimum Liability Auto Insurance Requirements by State
ALBI & PD Liab25/50/25
AKBI & PD Liab50/100/25
AZBI & PD Liab15/30/10
ARBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
CABI & PD Liab15/30/5
COBI & PD Liab25/50/15
CTBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
DEBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/10
DCBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/10
FLPD Liab, PIP10/20/10
GABI & PD Liab25/50/25
HIBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
IDBI & PD Liab25/50/15
ILBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
INBI & PD Liab25/50/25
IABI & PD Liab20/40/15
KSBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
KYBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
LABI & PD Liab15/30/25
MEBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM, Medpay50/100/25
MDBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/15
MABI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/5
MIBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
MNBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/10
MSBI & PD Liab25/50/25
MOBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/25
MTBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NEBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
NVBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NHFR only25/50/25
NJBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM15/30/5
NMBI & PD Liab25/50/10
NYBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/10
NCBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM30/60/25
NDBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
OHBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OKBI & PD Liab25/50/25
ORBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/20
PABI & PD Liab, PIP15/30/5
RIBI & PD Liab25/50/25
SCBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
SDBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
TNBI & PD Liab25/50/15
TXBI & PD Liab, PIP30/60/25
UTBI & PD Liab, PIP25/65/15
VTBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/10
VABI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
WABI & PD Liab25/50/10
WVBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
WIBI & PD Liab, UM, Medpay25/50/10
WYBI & PD Liab25/50/20
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You will notice that some states have more than BI and PD liability. Drivers that live in states with more coverage will not have to pay more. But you will have to pay more if you live in a state where some coverages are not included in liability insurance.

For example, if you live in a state where BI and PD liability are required but UM/UIM isn’t, you will pay more money if you add UM/UIM coverage to your policy.

What is the minimum amount of liability car insurance required for a commercial motor vehicle?

Commercial vehicles have the same coverage limits as standard car insurance for personal vehicles. But insurance companies insist that you get a higher coverage level to prevent your company from having insufficient insurance.

We recommend adding a general liability insurance policy under business insurance to cover all your bases. Check with your commercial insurance company to see if you can bundle general liability insurance to your commercial auto insurance policy.

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What coverages are available under liability car insurance?

Although each state’s liability insurance requirements vary, it’s essential for you to know what each coverage does.

Let’s look at the list below to see the available coverages under liability auto insurance.

  • Bodily injury (BI) liability. Your car insurance policy covers the hospital and medical bills of another driver when you’re at fault in a car accident.
  • Property damage (PD) liability. Your insurance policy pays for damage to another driver’s car or other property when you’re at fault in an accident.
  • Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage. This coverage pays for bodily injury and property damage expenses if you’re in an accident with an uninsured driver.
  • Underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage. The insurance company covers bodily injury and property damage costs when the at-fault driver doesn’t have enough on their coverage limits.
  • Personal injury protection (PIP). This insurance type provides coverage for medical bills, child care costs, lost wages, legal fees, and other essential services regardless of fault in a car accident.
  • Medical payments (MedPay). Your insurance company pays for medical-related expenses, such as medications, copays, and other health-related costs.

UM/UIM coverage comes with separate coverage limits, and they will provide coverage when you are not at fault in an accident. PIP and MedPay provide coverage even if you are at fault.

If you are financing or leasing a car, you will need full coverage insurance. Full coverage comes with collision and comprehensive coverage, and each coverage pays for damage to your vehicle regardless of fault.

How much are liability insurance rates?

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the national average for liability insurance is $50 per month. However, liability auto insurance varies for each state.

Let’s examine how each state’s liability rates.

Average Monthly Liability Car Insurance Rates
StatesAverage Monthly Liability Rates
District of Columbia$61
New Hampshire$35
New Jersey$77
New Mexico$46
New York$73
North Carolina$31
North Dakota$25
Rhode Island$71
South Carolina$53
South Dakota$27
West Virginia$43
*National Average$50
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South Dakota and Iowa have the cheapest liability insurance rates, but Louisiana and Florida have the most expensive liability car insurance rates. But you could get more affordable car insurance rates if you shop with the right company.

Multiple factors determine whether affordable insurance is available to you. If you are older than 24 with a clean driving record, you can get cheaper rates.

You can also lower your monthly payment when you qualify for several car insurance discounts.

Which car insurance company has the cheapest liability-only insurance?

If you are thinking about shopping around for liability insurance, you should look at the top 10 car insurance companies in the United States.

Here is a list of estimates from the best companies in the nation.

Monthly Liability Car Insurance Rates by Company
CompaniesLiability-Only Car Insurance Rates
American Family$119
Liberty Mutual$211
State Farm$125
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USAA car insurance is the most affordable in America, but USAA is available for veterans and their immediate families (such as a wife and children). Therefore, we recommend GEICO, American Family, and Nationwide if you want to save money on insurance.

Does liability car insurance go up if you raise your coverage level?

Yes, it does. Your car insurance agent may recommend that you increase your coverage level to 50/100/50 or 100/300/100. But increasing your coverage limits can drive up your insurance rates by at least 10%.

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Minimum Amount of Liability Insurance Required: The Bottom Line

The minimum car insurance requirements may differ for each state, but it still may not be enough for complicated situations. If you are at fault in an accident where a car has a value over the minimum amount, you are still responsible for covering the cost of damages and injuries.

So, we recommend getting a higher coverage level to avoid a situation where you don’t have enough coverage. Do not forget to shop around to get the best deal.

Use our free online quote tool to compare multiple insurance companies in your area.